Democratic Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot faced criticism on Twitter for posting a picture of herself reading "To Kill a Mockingbird" in a Texas bookstore and coming out against book banning.
"In Texas, reading any damn book I choose," Lightfoot wrote on Sunday. "No banning of books or thought. Ever."
Many Twitter users excoriated Lightfoot for the tweet, with some urging her to tend to Chicago's skyrocketing crime rate instead of tweeting about books. Others pointed out that "To Kill a Mockingbird" was banned in California, a blue state.
"According to Barack Obama, in Chicago it's easier for a kid to get a gun than a book," wrote Daily Wire investigative reporter Luke Rosiak.
"Yep, Red states rock," wrote Dr. Nan Hayworth, a former Republican congresswoman from New York. "Good to see Chicago's mayor celebrating this. Let's see if she takes home any lessons."
"I don’t get it," tweeted National Review editor Philip Klein. "Was this an attempted dunk on Texas? Because the takeaway here is that in Texas, she can read any damn book she chooses."
"Wise choice," tweeted Nick Freitas, a Republican state delegate in Virginia. "With all the violence in the city you manage, I can see why you want to go somewhere safe to read."
"You picked a safe place, TEXAS, to read any damn book you choose," tweeted Texas state Rep. James White, a Republican. "Congrats! But with crime fatally impacting Chicago children & your aspiration for Chicago become an abortion sanctuary is there any place for Chicago children to read or listen a book safely."
The Cook County GOP used an emoji to suggest Lightfoot is a clown and mentioned how a 16-year-old boy died after being shot in Millennium Park during a "large group" incident Saturday night, according to police.
"I can understand why you're in Texas, based on reports about what's currently happening in Chicago," said journalist Stephen L. Miller.
"Listen, California Democrats banned that book. Not Texas Republicans," said journalist Ian Miles Cheong.
Commentator Guy Benson posted a photo of a 2020 Newsweek story about how "To Kill a Mockingbird," had been banned from schools in Burbank, California. The ban came following allegations from four parents, three of whom were Black, that the book posed potential harm to the district's roughly 400 Black students.
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain, John Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men," Theodore Taylor's "The Cay" and Mildred D. Taylor's "Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry," were also banned.
"Are you sure you're not in Gavin Newsom's California?" asked radio host Larry O'Connor.
Lightfoot's photo op was reminiscent of a similar tweet made by Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom, who was slammed in March after posting a photo of himself reading "Beloved" by Toni Morrison, next to several other books he suggested some states are "afraid" of because of censorship. "To Kill a Mockingbird" was included.